8615140675_3195f50ac8_zImage from Flickr via Abhinay Omkar

We are driving to our home in Savannah, Georgia, after an excellent evening performance at our local playhouse of Tennessee Williams’s shocker Suddenly, Last Summer, when I realize that my cell phone is not in the side pocket of my purse.

“I must have left it at the house,” I say to my husband, surprised at myself for such an oversight.

My wonderful, versatile iPhone is my constant companion. I grope around for it in the early-morning darkness when it’s time to get up and walk the dog. It stays within arm’s reach when I’m writing or painting or reading or cooking. Each night before going to bed I dock it to maintain a full charge. I am never without my phone—except now.

First I use our land-line phone to call my cell number, hoping the ring tone will sound in the house and alert me to its whereabouts. No response.

Fred and I spend the next half hour searching the entire house—in purses and coat pockets, under the bed, between couch cushions, even in the laundry hamper—but alas, we find no phone. He grabs a flashlight and thoroughly searches both cars while I wait, biting my nails. My heart sinks when he returns empty-handed.

Where can it be?

Then inspiration strikes. My daughter and I share an app called “Find My Friends,” which enables one of us to know via GPS where the other one is. I use Fred’s iPhone to text her in Chicago, and she calls his cell a few minutes later to give me my phone’s location—at the theater we attended earlier in the evening.

Relieved, I leave a voice message at the box office explaining my loss, repeating my home phone number, and asking someone to call me when my cell phone is found.

The next morning one of the actors calls me from his home to say that my message has been received and that he will personally search for my phone at noon, when the troupe assembles at the theater to strike the set. Reassured and profoundly grateful, I relax for the first time in 13 hours.

At 11 a.m. our home phone rings again, but the caller is not the person I am expecting. The voice is young and female and totally unfamiliar.

“I don’t know who I’m calling,” she says, “but I found a cell phone and, although it’s locked, this number was displayed on the screen.” I say that I have, indeed, lost my phone and ask her where she is.

She is attending a church meeting in the theater where we were last night. She explains that after parking her car, she paused to change from driving shoes to high-heeled pumps, and that was when she spotted my phone lying in the grass.

I thank her again and again, and we make arrangements to meet in an hour. Her name, of course, is “Angel.”

The more I ponder this experience, the more I’m convinced that my phone would still be gone had not three stars suddenly aligned. The first enabled my daughter to locate my missing iPhone from 750 miles away. The second happened when my attempt to summon a ring tone caused a “missed call” message—including my home number—to display on the face of my locked cell phone. The third pointed the way for an honest stranger named Angel to find it and give it back.


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  • Carole Barker December 21, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    What a wonderful message! Very believable and true—things happen for reasons and I have never been one to question. This story continues my belief in angels and how things work out if one is patient and a “believer.” Love to you and I am proud that you are one of my special friends…..Carole